India vs South Africa, 3rd Test, Day 2: Jasprit Bumrah brings India back, batsmen now need to play their part

India are well and truly back in the third and final Test in Johannesburg on Thursday, all thanks to bowlers, especially Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. 

India vs South Africa, 3rd Test, Day 2: Jasprit Bumrah brings India back, batsmen now need to play their part
Jasprit Bumrah took his maiden five-for in Test cricket. (PTI)

India are well and truly back in the third and final Test in Johannesburg on Thursday, all thanks to bowlers, especially Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar. 

On the second day at the Wanderers Stadium, Bumrah (5/54) and Bhuvneshwar (3/44) combined well to bowl South Africa out for 194 to concede a minor seven-run lead, after which India closed the day on 49/1, leading the hosts by 42 runs.

India's batsmen Murali Vijay and KL Rahul played with a positive frame of mind and were unbeaten at stumps on 13 and 16 respectively. Parthiv Patel was the only Indian batsman to get out for 16 off 15 balls.    

Things looked really bleak for the visitors after the opening day on Wednesday, and they needed to take early wickets to buoy their spirits. Bhuvneshwar put his hand up and had Deal Elgar caught behind early in the morning session.

Things started well for the tourists but nightwatchman Kagiso Rabada proved to be a big pain in the neck and his 64-run stand with Hashim Amla frustrated India not a little. After Rabada's departure off Ishant Sharma for 30, the Indian bowlers got their rhythm back and before long Bhuvneshwar cleaned up the dangerous AB de Villiers with a peach of an in-swinger for 5.

South Africa's next two recognized batsmen Faf du Plessis (8) and Quinton de Kock (8) joined de Villiers back in the dressing room soon, after finding Bumrah unplayable.  

Amla showed a lot of doggedness and batted well for his 61 but once he was sent back by Bumrah, the Indian bowlers succeeded in making short work of the Proteas tailenders. Amla survived quite a few close calls with DRS but the umpire's call had him intact. 

Also, India had an ordinary day with their reviews and took them when they shouldn't have - more often than not. And on one occasion when they should have reviewed an lbw against de Villiers they chose not to. Luckily for them, de Villiers didn't survive for long.   

When the Indians started their second innings, the focus was clearly to get quick runs and Patel, promoted to the opening spot this time, took the lead. His innings was scratchy but provided the clue as to how to make the most of this pitch changing for the worse with every session.   

For the third straight match in the series, India have found themselves back into the contest thanks to their bowlers. Hopefully, the batsmen will have learnt from their mistakes in the previous two matches, and will now build on this good start they have got in the second innings in order to provide the bowlers with a good total to defend. 

A win here will go a long way in salving their wounded pride caused by the crushing defeats in Cape Town and Centurion.

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